Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Shall We Take the Darkness In?

Shall We Take the Darkness In?

(a response to the tragedy in Boston)

The darkness cuts into

our souls

like some switchblade

stuck into our gut

in the back alley

of doubt

Its hiddenness covers us

like a moldy blanket

cast over our heads-

the smell of it is

rank with crowded

grief and hate

We bleed and we gasp

for again

the darkness seems so

vast and deep and

we remember not

the light

And that is the victory

that must not be-

for light and life

are above and below

the lie that

is the darkness

We must tie off the wound

with torn rags

of love and compassion

and cast flowers over

the decay of the

wrong that wants to win

The darkness only wins if

we take it in-

Its desire is to have

our souls, but our

souls belong

to the light

The darkness cannot stand the flowers

that grow in the

ruin that becomes

the soil of new beginnings-


it cannot believe that

our scars are the

signs of our healing

The darkness cannot win

unless we take it in

Goodness is stronger

than evil

Jody Seymour

April 2013

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Need for an Old Outfit

The Need for an Old Outfit


            Besides unbelievable heartbreak what should our response be to things like children being shot in their school rooms and bombs killing innocent bystanders at a road race?  One response could be a kind of “road rage” whereby we become even angrier than we often are. 

            We could build higher walls around ourselves, buy bigger and more powerful guns, and put on fear forged armor to protect ourselves from what is obviously a world full of threats.  Or we could try on that musty old coat that is in the attic wrapped up in what seems like a giant sandwich bag.

            The old coat is something someone used to wear but we deem it out of style.  To wear it now would indicate that we are living in the past or that we are simply not “with it.”  In an old book that many also judge to be out of date because the way forward it offers has to do with compassion and peace in the face of fear and violence; the “coat” is actually referred to as armor.

            I told you it is an old book.  The armor is molded with peace, faith, and truth.  It is even called the armor of God. (Ephesians 6:10-17)  But it is now in the attic because it is considered old and outdated.

            The armor was first offered by someone who probably only possessed one outfit and who often had no place to lay his head.  His way of life is often held in high regard but much like an old piece of art it may be honored but to see it you have to go to a museum…or an attic.

            I suggest we go to the attic, clean off the dust, and put on the old suit.  It will keep us from adding to the cycle of violence and we might even find a new security in wearing an old garment.

            Or is any of this Jesus' stuff really relevant anymore?  Do we really believe in the gospel of peace?  Maybe Jesus did not understand the need for the second amendment or the appropriate response to terrorism.

            All I can say is that we keep trying new outfits and look where it is getting us.  I suggest we dust off the old suit and try it on.  It may even come back into style but then upon reflection I am not sure it was ever in style.

            Jesus one time even said wearing the old outfit was something like carrying a cross.  No wonder it is usually found in the attic.